[techbooks] REVIEW: "Optical Communications Networks", Biswanath Mukherjee
- BKOPCMNT.RVW 990225
"Optical Communications Networks", Biswanath Mukherjee, 1997,
%A Biswanath Mukherjee mukherje@...
%C 300 Water Street, Whitby, Ontario L1N 9B6
%I McGraw-Hill Ryerson/Osborne
%O U$60.00 905-430-5000 800-565-5758 fax: 905-430-5020
%P 576 p.
%T "Optical Communications Networks"
The book is intended as a text for a graduate level course in the
networking and protocol aspects of a fibre optic based network above
the physical layer. In particular, in deals with wavelength division
multiplexing (WDM) architectures. While pedagogical styles, such as
end of chapter exercises, are present, the author also sees the work
as forming a reference for industry professionals.
Part one examines the foundational technologies. Chapter one presents
optical networking, and specifically WDM optical networking, as the
answer to pretty much all current networking problems, based on its
enormous bandwidth capabilities. However, this section also
demonstrates the differing requirements of students and professionals.
Where students will be able to accept statements made about technical
needs for WDM networking, communications workers will be rather
horrified at the cavalier dismissal of practical problems. On the
other hand, the tutorial value of the exercises will not delight any
classes. Many of the questions are childishly simplistic, while
others rely on material that is not supplied in the text. The
material on physical media, sources (lasers), and components is
demanding, and would require significant background in optics.
Part two looks at local optical networks in a very mathematics
intensive, and quite academic manner. Chapter three reviews options
for a single hop network structure and four details the Rainbow
example while five discusses multihop architectures as six examines
the GEMNET system. All of this text moves very quickly through basic
concepts. Channel sharing and multicasting is talked about in chapter
In starting to look at wide area networking, in part three, chapter
eight considers elements of topological design. Again, many points
are passed over quite tersely. A formal method is used to obtain an
optimal solution to a topological problem in chapter nine, but it
specifically ignores wavelength continuity constraints. Similar
shortcuts are taken in routing and minimizing frequencies used in
chapter ten. Chapter eleven discusses wavelength conversion, while
chapter twelve finishes up with other wavelength routing topics.
Part four is a grab bag of topics. Chapter thirteen examines
multiwavelength ring networks. "Feedback" loop elimination is
discussed in chapter fourteen. Amplifiers may be necessary in certain
optical networks, and optimising their placement is discussed in
chapter fifteen. Finally, chapter sixteen looks at the other two
contenders in optical networking technology, time (TDM) and code (CDM)
I am willing to grant that, in the hands of a knowledgeable
instructor, and with proper prerequisite background, this text would
be suitable for the course described. Professionals, however, will
find the content abrupt and possibly impractical. In a sparsely
populated field any work is valuable, but it could certainly be
copyright Robert M. Slade, 1999 BKOPCMNT.RVW 990225
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